Cub Linux and Neverware's Cloudready. I'm partial to the latter, but it's very easy to try both. If your old laptop has a reasonably spacious hard drive inside, consider dedicating it to a single, awesome purpose: It's not a new concept; the idea is basically to connect a big drive to your home network, then make the contents of that drive accessible to all your devices: PCs, phones , tablets and the like.
7 cool ways to reuse an old laptop
Even better, you can access the drive not just at home, but anywhere you're connected. Instead of dumping all your photos to the cloud, you can dump them to your NAS.
Instead of storing movies on your phone, you can stream them from your NAS. The oldie-but-goodie choice for this: It's designed for sharing files both locally and online, and it offers media-streaming features as well. Quick and easy remote access to the laptop hard drive. This is a slightly different animal than a media server. The idea is to turn your laptop into a media center that serves your TV, connecting directly to it for everything from recording broadcast TV stations to watching Netflix on the big screen.
CNET Do-It-Yourself PC Upgrade Projects : Guy Hart-Davis :
I don't see a ton of value in this option. Netflix isn't hard to come by, and many older laptops lack the horsepower necessary for DVR duty. Plus you need a tuner, antenna, remote, so on. Heck, if yours doesn't have an HDMI output, the project is pretty much done before it starts. That said, if you want to give it a try, check out this tutorial on setting up a home media center with Kodi. It's still a thing. In fact, it started being a thing so long ago, you might not recognize the name.
SETI home connects your PC to a distributed network, harnessing its processor to help analyze radio telescope data. In other words, now your leftover laptop can help with the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence. All you do is download the Boinc software available for Windows, Mac and -- hint-hint -- Linux , then choose SETI home from the list of available projects.
If aliens aren't your thing, Boinc also enables this kind of "volunteer computing" for things like medical research and climate analysis. Discovering Computers c Switching to the Mac: Steve Jobs Walter Isaacson. Macs For Dummies Edward C.
MacBook in easy steps, 6th Edition Nick Vandome. Fire in the Valley Paul Freiberger. Other books in this series. Back cover copy Discover the hidden magic of your Mac Maximize the power of your Mac with the useful and entertaining projects packed inside this easy-to-follow guide.
Set up videoconferencing via your webcamCreate a live radio broadcast, a podcast, or a vodcastConnect to a Windows PC remotelySend and receive SMS messages to and from cell phonesTurn your Mac into a jukebox and stream music wirelesslyCreate a multimedia DVDConvert any video content to iPod video formatAnd much more show more. Table of contents Part 1: Turn Your Mac into a Jukebox Project 3: Elementary orojects for those just starting out or for those with a need to review a few basics.
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